Choosing Differently But in the Same Way: How Self Impacts Beliefs About Other Voters

Yesim Orhun, University of Chicago, USA
Oleg Urminsky, University of Chicago, USA
We study the inferences voters made about the electorate in the 2008 presidential election. We extend the intuition of false consensus, introducing the novel phenomenon of conditional preference projection. We show that voters’ projection of candidate evaluations underlies their projection of candidate choice. Furthermore, we demonstrate that voters project the way in which own evaluations led to choice, rather than evaluations themselves, onto both like-minded voters and supporters of the opposing candidate (contrary to the literature). These effects extend to changes in beliefs over time and are robust across multiple studies, including those with actual voters and incentive-compatible measurement.
[ to cite ]:
Yesim Orhun and Oleg Urminsky (2010) ,"Choosing Differently But in the Same Way: How Self Impacts Beliefs About Other Voters", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37, eds. Margaret C. Campbell, Jeff Inman, and Rik Pieters, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 242-245 .